19 Aug 2022

Top Tips for a sustainable return to the classroom

Back To School

Top Tips for a sustainable return to the classroom

Boc'N'Roll sandwich wraps

Kildare online sustainable retailer, Faerly, has shared its Top Five tips on how to make the switch to an eco-friendly return to the classroom this autumn.

Established in October 2020 by Kildare-based James Byrne and Eoin Houlihan, Faerly enthusiastically promotes sustainable living by providing a platform for mostly Irish makers and suppliers of environmentally friendly products. The company supports many small and diverse suppliers in Ireland to offer their sustainable products online.

James Byrne said: ‘The environment is a huge concern for children these days and also for their parents. It can be hard however to manage the cost and the stress of returning to school and to make eco-conscious choices as well. That’s why we have put together these Top 5 tips for families.’

Invest in a reusable water bottle

Even though the initial cost of a reusable water bottle might be more expensive than the plastic pack of 10 in the supermarket, the reusable bottles are more cost effective in the long run and better for the environment to boot. Most plastic water bottles contain toxic BPA, BVA or phthalates. Stainless steel water bottles will last for years, are easy to wash and won’t leak toxic chemicals into your child’s food.

Use reusable straws and cups

Our motto at Faerly is that if you have to throw something away after one use, it’s probably bad for the environment. Think about what you’re using in your child’s lunchbox or for your own coffee on the way back from the school run and see if you can replace it with something that can be reused again and again such as a collapsible coffee mug or a stainless steel straw.

Sanitise with eco-friendly products

The COVID-19 pandemic has been detrimental to the environment in some instances with throwaway masks polluting the environment and harsh sanitisers that are produced unsustainably and cause damage to skin. Try and use re-usable, washable masks and gentle environmentally friendly palm-oil free hand sanitiser.

Buy plastic-free lunch boxes and lunch wraps

Make your lunch a plastic free one. While most lunch boxes are made from plastic, there are plenty of more sustainable options made from stainless steel, bamboo and silicone that will help keep lunches fresh all day long. Cling film and plastic wrappings can be replaced with reusable sandwich wraps or beeswax food wraps.

Remember the 3 Rs - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Going back to school is a great opportunity to start a conversation with your kids about the three Rs - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. You can start by reducing the amount of waste in your own household. Take stock of what you already own and reuse what you have, things like partially used school supplies, or old lunch boxes or a school bag that just needs a bit of TLC. Recycle or donate what you don't want and as much as you can, buy uniforms and textbooks second hand.

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